Nothing. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Zero.
And I’m OK with that.
Look, getting Shaq could’ve been amazing, I won’t deny that. It would’ve spiced up the second half it would’ve given the Cavs a legit low post threat and I would’ve loved having the big fella in town (it’d be a lot of fun).
But you have to admit, that’s a substantial risk that the Cavaliers don’t have to take.
First of all, they would’ve been giving up Ben Wallace in the (along with Pavlovic). I’m not a huge Wallace guy, but the man is useful. If you give up Wallace, who guards KG? Bosh? Odom? Picking up Shaq would be either a slight net gain or a lateral move. Sure, they could throw the ball down low, but they’d suffer defensively (unless you want all Varejao, all the time).
And it’s not like there wouldn’t be any offensive adjustments either. LeBron does a lot of drive-and-kick and if you have Shaq out there, he does what exactly? I’m not saying that the offense would be bad, but there would be some kind of adjustment period.
Nevermind the chemistry problems. Though Shaq seems like an (extremely) easy guy to get along with, you’d either have to send him or Z to the bench. I just have a hard time saying to Z, “thanks for all the blood, sweat and tears this past decade, but get on the bench for the title push”.
Look, teams weren’t willing to trade for those expiring deals this time around. Maybe no one wants to be the next Chris Wallace (or McHale), I dunno. But the Cavs weren’t the only team looking to trade a big contract. Porland was dangling Raef LaFrenz and they ended up with nothing as well.
(also, I think the Cavs had a second move planned once they got Shaq. It doesn’t make sense from a basketball standpoint to trade Ben and not pick up a PF somewhere else. If they really wanted Shaq, they could’ve traded Wally instead, but they would’ve been down to just Tarence Kinsey at the 2).
At the end of the day, the Cavs are 24-4 team when they have their full compliment of starters. That ain’t bad. Would I have liked them to make a deal? Sure. But I don’t want Ferry making a trade just to make a trade. It has to be the right deal for this ballclub (both short term and long term) and if the Suns wanted too much, then I don’t blame Ferry for balking (he was obviously working the lines). At this point, I think you just have to trust his track record with these things.
Basically, I’m fine with them not pulling the trigger. It’s not nearly as exciting and having the Big Cactus (Big Cuyahoga? Big Flaming River? Big Ford Plant?) here would’ve been beyond cool. But they’re still 41-11, despite having their share of injuries, and when they’re healthy, they’re really good.
Let’s just hope they stay healthy (and some bigs get bought out. *cough* JoeSmithDrewGooden *cough*)